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Sting Operation Catches Florida Cop Demanding Cash To Ignore Parking Violations

CBS Miami

A parking cop in Miami Beach, Florida has been arrested following a sting operation which revealed he’s been extorting a local valet business for $1000 a month.

In return for the money, he neglected to write the company up for parking violations.

See news coverage from CBD Miami here:

When the city’s parking director received a tip that Dante Zirio, 57, was involved in a bribery scheme, they began watching him.

The police enlisted the help of APS Parking LLC, whose owner gave Diaz a $750 payment on video as part of the operation.

Shortly thereafter, Diaz was under arrest for charges of “extortion, bribery and accepting an unlawful compensation for official behavior.”

Miami Beach City Manager Jimmy Morales sent an email to the city’s mayor, saying:

“It’s a sad day when a public official engages in such behavior, but it is good to know that internally we did the right thing to identify and arrest the perpetrator.”

Morales also indicated that Zirio seemed to be acting on his own while committing these crimes, but urged officers to continue investigating just to be certain.

“We will not tolerate any act of bribery or public corruption in the City of Miami Beach.”

Zirio has been a Miami Beach public employee for 20 years. His employment status will be decided after a “pre-disciplinary” hearing on Monday, December 23.

It’s more than likely his days as a traffic cop are now behind him.

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Written by Collin Gossel

Collin Gossel is a writer and comedian living in Brooklyn, New York, but there are nights when he looks up at the stars and wistfully thinks to himself “there’s got to be more out there…” You can catch Collin improvising new musicals every Tuesday night at the Magnet Theater’s Musical Megawatt, or follow his unfiltered thoughts on Twitter and Instagram @CollinGossel.--